Several reels of old nitrate film were found in the rafters of a detached garage near Worcester, Massachusetts, when the owner had passed away.
Nitrate film is highly flammable, and it creates it’s own oxygen when it burns. The film reels had been in the garage during the heat of summer and the cold of winter for decades, so it was doubtful that the film would be in good condition.
Surprisingly, the film turned out to be in excellent condition. The oldest was from 1919, and the newest from 1926. One of them was a Kinograms newsreel of game seven of the 1924 World Series.
The New York Giants had gone into the fall classic heavily favored over the Washington Senators, but Washington had forced a game 7. New York led 3-1 in the eighth inning, when Bucky Harris hit a routine ground ball, which took a hard bounce over the third baseman. Two runs scored, and the game was tied. In the ninth inning, 36 year old Walter “Big Train” Johnson, a future Hall of Famer, came in to pitch on only one day’s rest. He held the Giants scoreless for four innings. In the bottom of the twelve inning, Muddy Ruel hit a double, then Earl McNeely followed with another single that bounced over the third baseman. The Washington Senators had their first World Series title. In fact, the 1924 Series win is the only World Series title for a team from the Nation’s capital.
1960 was the last year for the Griffith owned Washington Senators in DC. The team would move to Minneapolis-St Paul and became the Minnesota Twins for the 1961 season.
This wonderful newsreel is the only known footage of the 1924 World Series, and it comes courtesy of The Library of Congress.